In Spring 2021, I gave two well-received presentations that were also Continual Professional Development (CPD) units. My presentations centred around envisioning what a neurodiversity-led 2050 could look like.

29 May 2021: 14th International Conference on ADHD in Berlin: The first was part of a panel chat alongside fellow ADHD-ers Jane Sedgwick and Thomas Henson, and was chaired by consultant clinical psychologist and UK Adult ADHD Network President Dr Kobus van Rensburg. The session opened the conference, which was attended by 870 Europe-based mental health specialists from 17 countries (+ 6 languages and interpreters – almost as fabulous as Eurovision). Keynote speakers included leading ADHD authorities Professor Stephen Farone (who urged psychologists and psychiatrists to join in the conversation in neurodiversity!) and collaborator and mentor Professor Philip Asherson. Feedback include: ‘Your session was most definitely the star event!’; ‘excellent presentations which came straight from the heart’; Three unique and personal perspectives delivered to a large and appreciative audience’; ‘ there can be few better ways to start a health care professional conference than listening to the true experts’

11 June 2021: Association of Dyslexia Specialists in Higher Education (ADSHE) 20th Anniversary conference: This was a keynote for the attended by 186 dyslexia specialists. Feedback include: ‘Such a breath of fresh air’, ‘an eye opener’, ‘incredibly interesting perspective’, ‘Kai bubbles over with wonderful enthusiasm.

See images and selected feedback (including mine) below. Email to book and please do so least 2 months in advance. Charges depend on your EDI rates.

ABOUT: A masterclass to catalyse thinking and action about the role of neurodiversity and its creativity for social change, through a performance-lecture about what a neurodiversity-led future (in the year ‘2050’) could look like.

KEY WORDS: neurodiversity, creativity, social justice, social art, performance lecture, disability arts, artistic research, creative research, neurodivergent leadership

DESCRIPTION: I will begin with a version of a performance-lecture first presented to 130 Royal Society of Arts Fellows in Summer 2020. This will be followed by a discussion and Q&A on neurodiversity, and the importance of equity, diversity and inclusivity in the classroom and cultural spaces.

The performance-lecture presents a creative, neurodivergent and decolonised future. Situated in the year 2050, this vision celebrates – not ignore or punish –people with ‘non-standard’ cognitive, communication and learning modes, including those with dyslexia, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), autism and more, and how these intersects with race, class and gender. 2050 is snappy – fast-paced, as well as impatient for change. 

What could a neurodiversity-led 2050 look like? In 30 years’ time, what would the autistic Greta Thunberg as President do? Instead of OBE/MBE/CBE, will we have NDEs – NeuroDiversity medals of Excellence? By the next generation, will universities finally stop failing or boring people who cannot sit still. Instead, will it reward interdisciplinarity and intellectual promiscuity with MASc and PhDs and celebrate the next generations of Leonardo Da Vinci-s, whose dyslexia and ADHD are behind his intellectual and creative restlessness?By 2050, will ‘neurodiversity’ be actually diversified, queered and de-teritorialised, and we stop using the excuse of the fight against ableism and neuro-normativity to perpetuate white privilege, racism and elitism, but truly celebrate people in all shades and interpretations, identifications and presentations of neurodiversities?

VIDEO RECORDING OF PERFORMANCE-LECTURE: Delivered on Teams to University of Reading, Summer 2020.



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